E-Brief: March 2017

E-Brief: March 2017

Law Society adopts vision for publicly funded legal aid

The Law Society has released the report, "A Vision for Publicly Funded Legal Aid in British Columbia," prepared for the Benchers by the Legal Aid Task Force. On Friday, March 3, the Benchers voted to adopt the vision set out in the report. Read the report and news release.

Amendments to the Law Society Rules

The Benchers have approved amendments to the Law Society Rules: The discretion to waive the fee for former lawyers or judges reinstating as retired members to do pro bono work has been transferred from the Credentials Committee to the Executive Director (Rule 2-85(3)); and a reference to the BC Code has been corrected (Rule 3-34). Click here for highlights of amendments.

Amendments to the Code of Professional Conduct for BC

The Benchers have approved an amendment to the BC Code: a lawyer's duty to sign court orders that have been granted or agreed has been added to the commentary on rules 3.7-9 and 5.1-2. Click here for highlights of amendments.

2016 Law Society audited financial statements and reports

The Benchers approved the Law Society's 2016 audited financial statements at their March 3 meeting. The audited financial statements will be made available on our website in early April (About us > Strategic Planning and Annual Reports).

Secondary school essay contest on the rule of law

The Law Society is inviting high school students who have taken, or are currently enrolled in, Law 12 or Civic Studies 11, to submit an essay on a topic related to the rule of law. The deadline for submissions is April 10, 2017. For contest details, visit the website.

For more information on the work of the Rule of Law and Lawyer Independence Advisory Committee, follow @RuleofLawBC on Twitter and visit our website.

Protect your purchaser client and yourself

In Mao v. Lui, 2017 BCSC 226, a notary, acting for a purchaser, was found liable for failing to make reasonable inquiries regarding an owner’s residency status. In the decision, the Court held that withholding the non-resident income tax from the purchase price does not place a purchaser in breach of the contract of purchase and sale, where the registered owner may be a non-resident. Real estate practitioners should consider advising their purchaser clients to withhold non-resident income tax in appropriate circumstances.

Launch of new Law Society website

On Monday, March 6, the Law Society transitioned to a new website, featuring a clean, modern look, more efficient navigation, updated content and accessibility on mobile and tablet devices. If you have inquiries about the new website, contact Communications.

From the courts

The Federal Court has issued a Notice to the Parties and the Profession on gowning for counsel and a Notice to the Parties and the Profession on summer recess. Visit the court's website for more information.

The BC Supreme Court has issued Practice Direction 52 Restoration of Dissolved Society and Practice Direction 53 Restoration of Dissolved Company, both of which took effect on March 1, 2017. For more information, visit the court's website.


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Send your comments or questions to communications@lsbc.org.